Let’s Make Our Roads Safer; December is National Impaired Driving Prevention Month

For the fourth consecutive year, President Barack Obama is recognizing December as National Impaired Driving Prevention Month. Identified as a national priority in the Administration’s National Drug Control Strategy, the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) has been working with the Department of Transportation, National Transportation Safety Board and other Federal agencies to address this serious problem.It is well known that drugs, even medications that are prescribed, can impair perception, judgment, motor skills, and memory – critical skills for safe and responsible driving. With an ambitious goal set by President Obama to reduce drugged driving in America by 10 percent by 2015, the Administration remains focused on four key areas to reduce drugged driving: increasing public awareness; enhancing legal reforms, such as per se (or “zero tolerance”) laws that make it easier to keep drugged drivers off the road advancing technology for drug tests and data collection; and increasing law enforcement’s ability to identify drugged drivers.

In 2011, 9.4 million people (3.7 percent of the population) aged 12 or older reported driving under the influence of illicit drugs during the past year. This is a decrease from the 4.2 percent rate reported in both 2010 and 2009. Progress is being made, but there is much more to do.

This December, we encourage non-governmental organizations, law enforcement, and state and Federal partners to raise awareness of the threat drugged driving poses to public health and public safety. Here is additional information on how you can get involved:

  • Forward the President’s National Impaired Driving Prevention Month Proclamation to friends, family, and colleagues,
  • RSVP here for the Above the Influence webinar highlighting how to raise awareness of drugged driving in your community on Tuesday, December 3 at 1:00PM EST
  • Download and forward a copy of ONDCP’s Drugged Driving Toolkit for community stakeholders, and engage your community,
  • Join ONDCP, NTSB, and other Federal partners for a Twitter chat on Wednesday, December 18, 4:00PM – 5:00PM EST, #druggeddriving
  • Use social media to connect with our partners through ONDCP’s Twitter account @ONDCP and share drugged driving content throughout the month, and
  • Check out ONDCP’s Drugged Driving web page, which provides the latest research, resources, and partner programs.

We would like to hear from you about activities you have planned to observe National Impaired Driving Prevention Month. Please send your updates to Jacqueline Hackett at [email protected].  Thank you again for your support and dedication to making our roads safer.

Paid for by Dennis Keene for State Representative Campaign
LRC photos courtesy of LRC Public Information